Dagenham & Redbridge look to build on positive performance

Dagenham & Redbridge boss Daryl McMahon is hoping to build on a positive midweek performance when they welcome Wealdstone to Victoria Road this weekend.

Daggers picked up a point from a 1-1 draw with high-flying National League rivals Boreham Wood on Tuesday, thanks to a second-half goal from substitute Myles Weston.

And that leaves them sitting in 13th place, four points off the play-off spots, as they prepare to host their west London rivals.

“We had a positive performance on Tuesday and thankfully we’ve not had any new injuries which is always nice,” McMahon told the club website.

“We’re looking to build on the performance we put in on Tuesday night against Boreham Wood, against a very good team.

“I thought we showed a really controlled performance, with good quality, and hopefully we can build on that.

“I think if anyone has watched Wealdstone since Stuart [Maynard] has been there, they are a good football team, they’ve got really good one-v-one players, they’ve got pace all over the pitch.

“We played them three times last season and they were all difficult games.

“We look forward to playing against them, because we’re at home again and we feel our home form is good. We’ve lost one at home and we’ve been unbeaten for quite a while at home before that, so we know we’re strong at home.”

Daggers were forced into a change of approach against Wood, having seen Paul McCallum and Sam Ling limp off in the first half of their 2-0 loss at FC Halifax Town on Saturday.

But McMahon was pleased with how his players adapted against a strong opponent, adding: “We had noone else available to play a back four, it was semi forced upon us. 

“We signed Ty [Johnson] from Woking last week who can play in that role and as a winger, and we had Smarty [Sam Smart] coming in Monday morning from Halifax, he can also go into that role and give Westy a little break.

“With Lingy being out we had no recognised full-backs, so we had to play a 3-5-2. We know it’s a formation we can play, we’ve played it well for two years since I’ve been here.

“What we’ve lost with Macca going out is that out ball you have, to clip it into and he keeps it alive.

“The quality of the longer balls forward, they’ve got to hit Junior [Morias] and Josh [Walker], hit the space so they can use their speed to get into.

“We’ve always passed the ball in the final third and moved it as quick as we could, losing Macca does change it slightly, but it’s something we’ve got to adapt to and I don’t think it’s a problem for us.”

Despite the injury problems they have suffered in the opening months of the current campaign, McMahon is encouraged by the fact his squad remain in touching distance of

the promotion places.
And he is hoping to be able to boost numbers as they bid to maintain their interest in the top seven, adding: “We’ve had a really, really tough opening 16 games in terms of injuries and we got told Sam Ling needs an operation on his foot now, that’s six operations we’ve had this season, which is incredible.

“It can be demoralising sometimes for staff and players when you keep losing teammates but this team keeps fighting back and the performance on Tuesday night showed the quality we still have in the building. And we still had that on the bench, bringing on Westy and [Omar] Mussa.

“We believe in ourselves, we believe in what we’ve got and hopefully we can add one or two to the squad as we go along and hopefully get one or two back quickly as well and we know we’ve got a group that can compete in this division.”


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